Stone Foundation tour venues
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A seven-piece soul and mod band, Stone Foundation is based in the UK and performs all over the country. The group’s blend of Memphis soulful rock ‘n’ roll and Northern Soul is always distinctly British, despite working with some legendary US soul vocalists, such as Betty LaVette and William Bell, a Stax singer. The band takes on board the ‘modern’ British sound of the 1960s, too, with musical references to acts such as The Who underpinning their style. The band’s sound also owes a certain amount to the work of Paul Weller, whether it is as a solo artist, a member of the Style Council or leader of the Jam.
Stone Foundation's early work
Stone Foundation came about following the musical bond created by Neil Sheasby and Neil Jones. Sheasby cites groups of the 1980s, such as Dexys Midnight Runners, as being influences on his style, whereas Jones came to soul via old-school hip-hop and break beats. The pair met in the 1990s while working on the Midlands gigging scene, but in different bands, sometimes booked to play on the same bill. When their respective musical projects came to an end, the two got together in a songwriting capacity. Sheasby provided the basslines and grooves while Jones worked on the vocals and melodies. The pair hit it off as a songwriting duo and went on to recruit the rest of the band by finding high-quality local musicians to complete the lineup. Stone Foundation took their name from a magazine article written about Andy Newmark, the famous drummer who provided the beats for Sly and the Family Stone. Sheasby has gone on record as saying they neither of them has looked back since that point in time.
Stone Foundation's breakthrough moments
The leading pair continued to hone their sound as well as the band’s lineup throughout the 2000s. In 2011, they were noticed by John Bradbury, who drummed for the UK two-tone hit makers, The Specials. Following the much-lauded reunion tour of The Specials, Stone Foundation was invited by Bradbury to open shows for them on a UK-wide arena tour. This exposed the soul band to a much wider audience for the first time. In 2014, the group toured in Japan, where they played to audiences of over 4,000 people at festivals. In recent years, the group has gone on to collaborate with a number of artists, including Nolan Porter, Carleen Anderson and Paul Weller, Sheasby’s musical hero.
Weller features on Street Rituals, a 2017 album by Stone Foundation. Other recent works include A Life Unlimited of 2015 and To Find the Spirit, of 2014. In Our Time was the first full studio album, released in 2005.
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